President Donald Trump shrugged off mounting nationwide criticism of his executive order to ban all refugees from entering the United States for 120 days and suspend entry to visa and green card holders from seven Muslim-majority countries on Saturday, insisting it was "working out very nicely."
"It's not a Muslim ban, but we're totally prepared," Trump said in a statement Saturday afternoon. "It's working out very nicely. You see it at the airports, you see it all over, it's working out very nicely. We're going to have a very, very strict ban and we're going to have extreme vetting, which we should have had in this country for many years."
The ban, which prohibits over 130 million people including many long-term U.S. residents from entering the United States, does in fact closely resemble Trump's campaign pledge to ban Muslims from the nation. And it is not going "very nicely," judging from the massive protests forming first at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport that have spread to other airports across the country. The ban has outraged governments across the world, including that of Iran, which announced Saturday its own retaliatory ban on U.S. citizens.
Backing Trump's decision are senior Republican leadership, like House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), who praised the decision Friday as essential to national security. Other prominent GOP leaders like Sens. Lindsay Graham of South Carolina, John McCain of Arizona and Marco Rubio of Florida have been silent amid the growing demonstrations.